Millions in Sahel to require food aid (UN NEWS Centre)

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http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=44183&Cr=sahel&Cr1=#.USiYhcerWg0

Millions in Africa’s Sahel region will continue to require food aid, says UN agency

A year after the international community launched a massive humanitarian response to the food crisis affecting Africa’s Sahel region, millions of people there are still affected by drought and require assistance, according to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP).

“This year, some nine million people across the Sahel will still require food assistance from WFP, through emergency food assistance, rural development, nutrition and education activities,” said Ertharin Cousin, WFP Executive Director.

Ms. Cousin was the host of a high-level event in Rome bringing together leaders of humanitarian agencies, government representatives from affected countries and major donors to review the effectiveness of the assistance provided to the region.

Last year the international community helped to avert a humanitarian catastrophe by providing $1.2 billion in assistance to around 10 million people across eight countries in the Sahel, noted a news release issued by WFP.

“However, millions of people in the region are still affected by drought, with close to 1.5 million children under the age of five at risk of severe acute malnutrition,” said the agency.

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About Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.
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